Better Place confirmed Titsup. $2 million gone

By 8 February, 2013 11

At the end of January we called time on the Better Place electric car scheme.

But the optimists at ActewAGL and in the ACT Government remained in pollyanna mode (at least in public) today the ABC confirms the money and the dream have indeed gone.

ActewAGL was one of the initial investors in the project, putting in $2 million.

It also had a $60 million, 10-year contract with Better Place to supply electricity for the Canberra network.

Last month it was revealed Better Place was shifting its short-term focus away from Australia which would have delayed the project.

But now Better Place has announced it is winding up its Australian operations.

ActewAGL CEO Michael Costello says it is a disappointing development and his company is unlikely to see a return on its investment.

“We’re going to take stock of where we stand now and see we what we do next. But it won’t just be us. We’ll be talking to the government and we’ll be talking to other players,” he said.

“There are a lot of other people interested in this in Canberra. But it will be progress over the coming years. We don’t intend to back off.”

Anyone up for explaining the math on how 16 recharge points could have used $60 million in ‘leccy over ten years?

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11 Responses to Better Place confirmed Titsup. $2 million gone
#1
HiddenDragon12:38 pm, 08 Feb 13

Surely this won’t be the last such scheme, but the viability of any of them, without government carrots and sticks, will really depend on the price and continuing availability of petrol.

#2
Chop7112:52 pm, 08 Feb 13

This must have been one of those warm and fuzzy election promise thingys….. they never work.

toot toot

#3
switch1:03 pm, 08 Feb 13

HiddenDragon said :

Surely this won’t be the last such scheme, but the viability of any of them, without government carrots and sticks, will really depend on the price and continuing availability of petrol.

You mean, like ridiculously generous feed in tariffs?

#4
gooterz6:12 pm, 09 Feb 13

An electric car is bugger all to service.. yet they the car companies still want to charge the full petrol rate.

Wouldn’t be bad to have an electic car indrustry in Canberra.
What we need is the lightweight ones that are light and small. Then they’ll fit around our narrow streets. Seeing as we have zero auto indrustry in australia it could actually work

#5
steveu8:03 pm, 09 Feb 13

gooterz said :

An electric car is bugger all to service.. yet they the car companies still want to charge the full petrol rate.

Wouldn’t be bad to have an electic car indrustry in Canberra.
What we need is the lightweight ones that are light and small. Then they’ll fit around our narrow streets. Seeing as we have zero auto indrustry in australia it could actually work

Servicing – this was my understanding to (based off “who killed the electric car” the GM EV).

I’m sorry to see this happen as I think small commuter type EVs would have been great for Canberra. I mean we know our bus service is never going to work and replace our cars.

#6
pirate_taco10:10 am, 10 Feb 13

I was sceptical of this mob when the plan was first announced, I don’t like the idea of battery swaps and leasing your battery, but the oddest part was the fact that they are an electric car company that doesn’t make or sell electric cars, and then you’ve got the public charge points that don’t even make sense.
There is one at Belconnen Markets, if you had an electric car, good luck in getting that car space, but even then – what’s the point? EVs don’t tend to run out of range on around town trips, the only unsolved problem is longer trips.
They needed recharge or swap stations on highways linking major towns.

I’m a big fan of what Tesla is doing. Their Model S has up to 480km of range. Usage in most cases will be met by recharging at home, and they have started building a network of charge stations on major intertown routes in the US http://www.businessweek.com/articles/2012-09-25/tesla-fires-up-solar-powered-charging-stations.

The only real thing holding back electric cars here is the price, and that is made worse by high import tariffs, rules against self importing and things like the luxury car tax.
We don’t need the government to make electric cars happen, we just need the government to get out of the way.

#7
milkman12:56 pm, 10 Feb 13

pirate_taco said :

I was sceptical of this mob when the plan was first announced, I don’t like the idea of battery swaps and leasing your battery, but the oddest part was the fact that they are an electric car company that doesn’t make or sell electric cars, and then you’ve got the public charge points that don’t even make sense.
There is one at Belconnen Markets, if you had an electric car, good luck in getting that car space, but even then – what’s the point? EVs don’t tend to run out of range on around town trips, the only unsolved problem is longer trips.
They needed recharge or swap stations on highways linking major towns.

I’m a big fan of what Tesla is doing. Their Model S has up to 480km of range. Usage in most cases will be met by recharging at home, and they have started building a network of charge stations on major intertown routes in the US http://www.businessweek.com/articles/2012-09-25/tesla-fires-up-solar-powered-charging-stations.

The only real thing holding back electric cars here is the price, and that is made worse by high import tariffs, rules against self importing and things like the luxury car tax.
We don’t need the government to make electric cars happen, we just need the government to get out of the way.

+1, very well said.

#8
Roundhead895:43 pm, 10 Feb 13

Another renewable energy scheme goes belly-up. More taxpayers’ money down the gurgler. When will the radical greenies and their disciples in Labor finally get it?

#9
Here_and_Now7:00 pm, 10 Feb 13

Roundhead89 said :

Another renewable energy scheme goes belly-up. More taxpayers’ money down the gurgler. When will the radical greenies and their disciples in Labor finally get it?

Get what? That renewable energy is a bad thing?

And when the non-renewable sources run out, we will…what, exactly?

#10
thebrownstreak698:13 am, 11 Feb 13

Here_and_Now said :

Roundhead89 said :

Another renewable energy scheme goes belly-up. More taxpayers’ money down the gurgler. When will the radical greenies and their disciples in Labor finally get it?

Get what? That renewable energy is a bad thing?

And when the non-renewable sources run out, we will…what, exactly?

Renewables are a great thing, but they’re not an excuse to be foolish and wasteful with public money, which is something Labor and the Greens seem not to understand.

#11
Ben_Dover10:05 am, 11 Feb 13

It’s gone to a better place.

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